Sunday, November 22, 2009

CSB : Burnt Sugar Vanilla Bean Pound Cake

burnt sugar vanilla bean pound cake slice

♪♪ I'm baacckkk!! ♪♪

The exams are FINALLY over, and thank god for that! A few more days, and I would have ended up in an institution! I'm loving being back online, there is SO much to catch up on!

In the weeks before the exams, I only had the time to bake this cake, the ONE thing I made. The Cake Slice Bakers were recently open to new members, and I'd joined last month. We are currently baking out of a promising book, Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott. After missing last month's cake because of Diwali celebrations, I decided I had to make this.

The entire family had come over for dinner one day, since an aunt and a sister from Europe had come for a visit. I decided to serve it up that day. That explains the writing. I really wanted to use my newly acquired decorating skills some more, but I had barely managed to squeeze time out for making the cake! Plus, the frosting was way too soft for any serious decorating, I'd have to whip up another one just for it. Hopefully next time!

burnt sugar vanilla bean pound cake
Sorry about the horrible photo, it was taken inside the fridge! :P

The cake, though with so much sugar, wasn't really sweet. But the frosting was!!! If you lay it on real thin, like I did, it ends up being perfect! And plus, I successfully made caramel for this cake, something which almost always is a problem for me :) The cake was pretty good, it was gobbled up, but I don't think I'll be making it again!

Burnt Sugar Pound Cake
Adapted from Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott
Buy from

Makes 2 9 inch rounds

Burnt Sugar Syrup

1 cup [250 g] sugar
1 cup boiling water - make sure it's really hot

Instructions -
  1. Heat the sugar in a heavy bottomed pan over the stove, stirring occassionally till it melts.
  2. After the sugar is completely melted, add the boiling water, taking care to stand a little
  3. away, since hot sugar can REALLY burn! And make sure the water is boiling, otherwise the sugar will cool too soon.
  4. Wait to cool, and then transfer to a jar or something heat resistant, for later use.

For the Cake -
3 cups [450 g] flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla - I used half of a vanilla bean
1 cup [240 g] milk
1 cup [2 sticks, 225 g] butter
1 3/4 cup [450 g] sugar
4 eggs
1/2 cup burnt sugar syrup

Instructions -
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C [350 F]. Grease and line two 9 inch round pans.
  2. In a small bowl, combine together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until creamy. Add in the eggs, beating between each addition. Now pour in 1/2 cup of the Burnt Sugar Syrup, and beat till incorporated.
  4. Now add about 1/3 of the flour mixture, half of the milk , beating between each addition to incorporate, without overbeating.
  5. Add the remaining 1/3rd flour, remaining milk, and the last of the flour in the same way.
  6. Pour into prepared pans, and bake for 20 to 25 mins [Mine took exactly 25 minutes].
  7. Cool in pans after baking for until you can handle the pan with bare hands, and then cool on wire rack.

burnt sugar vanilla bean pound cake ready from the oven

For the Burnt Sugar Frosting -

3 3/4 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 cup Burnt Sugar Syrup
1/4 cup butter
1/2 tsp vanilla [I used the remaining half of the bean]
2-3 tbsp milk

Instructions -
  1. Mix together the sugar, the syrup, butter and vanilla in a large bowl.
  2. Add the milk a tablespoon at a time, until you reach the desired consistency.

Assembling the cake -
  1. Lay the first layer on a cake board, and level the cake. This is an important step.
  2. Put on about 1/3rd of the frosting on the cake, and spread it out.
  3. Add the second levelled layer, and then frost the cake and sides as desired. Have fun with it!

burnt sugar vanilla bean pound slice


  1. The cake looks so nice and dense. Welcome back!

  2. Glad you get time back in the kitchen! Great job on the cake.

  3. Sounds like a delicious recipe! I appreciate a nice pound cake!

  4. What a great recipe! I have never heard of something similar! So great that you are back, can't wait to see more wonderful recipes! :)

  5. Steph - Thank you! I really missed it all!

    Katrina - You have no idea how much I'd been craving it!!

    Cakebrain - The cake tastes really good. And if you use another filling, it would be amazing!

    Chocolaty Lifestyle - Thank you :) They are going to keep coming :)

  6. Welcome back to you!

    I really want this cake! I've heard nothing but good things and am anxious to try the frosting, sweet though it may be!

  7. Lovely cake..and what a nice blog..hope you did well in your exams..where did you do the cake decoration course??some institute?

  8. there it is finally...been waiting to see ur creation and it looks so good!

  9. Hey this looks yum!, would have never made out that the pic is in a fridge :), icing looks really good, will try it out!~

  10. Great job on your cake. I've been known to take pics inside my fridge too :-)

  11. Ingrid - Thanks for the sweet welcome! I would caution you though, and suggest you fill with something else. That's how the cake should shine the most.

    Madhuli - Thanks so much :) Drop me a mail, I'll give you the details.

    Rachel - Wow, thank you!!!

    Bindiya - Lol the picture was the ultimate worst I've ever taken :P

    Monica - Glad to know I'm not alone. I don't really care that much about photography, anyway!

  12. Your cake looks wonderful :)

  13. A burnt sugar pound cake? I just got so excited! Cute decorations too! :D

  14. hey !!! i tried out this recipe today ..n it came out awesome !!!!!!! didnt make the frosting though ...n used 5 eggs instead of 4 ...

    it was the softest cake ever !!!! literally melted in my mouth ..yum !!! cnt wait to try out more of ur cakes :)

    good work !!!!!!!

  15. Alicia - Thanks!

    Lorraine - Lol, thank you!

    Parita - :D

    Jitha - Thanks for trying this out.. I love hearing reviews of people that have actually tried the cake out!! Waiting to hear more reviews about things you've tried!


Please leave your thoughts below, I'd love to hear from you :-)

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